• New Jersey Student Learning Assessment
     
    Resources for Understanding Score Reports
     
    • The Be a Learning Hero video helps parents navigate the changes happening in classrooms across the country so they can help their children be successful in school. They provide resources and information for parents from some of the nation’s most well-respected education and parent organizations including the National PTA, Common Sense Media and GreatSchools. 

    Visit PARCC Online - http://www.parcconline.org/resources/parent-resources

    • Take a Sample Test
    • What's Different About the PARCC Test?
    • English Language Arts/Literacy Parent Guide for Student Report (English/Spanish)
    • Mathematics Parent Guide for Student Report (English/Spanish)
    • PARCC Performance Level Setting - explains the process used to establish cut-offs for each level (English/Spanish)
     
    Visit Understand the Score: http://understandthescore.org/ 
    • Video on how to interpret PARCC score reports
    • Score Report Guide
    • Resources for Parents and FAQ's
    • About the PARCC Assessment
    • NJ-specific Information
     
    New Jersey-specific information: http://www.state.nj.us/education/assessment/
    • Video, Fact Sheets, and FAQ's regarding the NJSLA
    • Educator, Parent, and Student Resources
    • Sample Questions 
     
     
     
    Overview and FAQ's
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    New Jersey adopted new, more rigorous academic standards in 2010 to support our students by providing them with an education that not only leads to a high school diploma, but also prepares them for success after graduation—whether it is college or the workforce.  The Flemington-Raritan Regional School District has developed our own curriculum to meet the new standards, and teachers have enhanced their daily instruction to help our students stay on track.

     

     

    However, higher standards alone are not enough to ensure that our students receive the excellent education they deserve. We also need high-quality assessments to measure students’ progress toward the new standards: The New Jersey Student Learning Assessment.

     

    1. Why do we need an assessment?

     

    The New Jersey Student Learning Assessment (NJSLA) assessment reflect K-12 standards that are aligned with postsecondary expectations. They will not only evaluate students’ progress, but also show teachers and families where a student needs help or is excelling so they are able to personalize instruction to meet individual student needs.

     

    These tests will help us ensure all students, regardless of income or family background, have equal access to a world-class education that will prepare them for success. The NJSLA assessments serve as an educational GPS system, assessing where a student currently is so educators can determine the best route for that student toward career and college readiness.

     

    2. How is this better than the previous state assessments?

     

    NJSLA assessments are tests worth taking, made up of texts worth reading and problems worth solving. They provide a more accurate picture of student understanding than previous tests because they ask students to show and apply what they know, instead of just picking the correct answer from a multiple-choice question.

     

    During the English language arts/literacy exam, students at every grade (3–11) must read one or more texts (and sometimes watch a video), write about what they read and/or viewed and provide evidence drawn from the reading.  In elementary school, students develop critical skills in using context clues to determine the meaning of unknown academic words and build the vocabulary needed for reading complex texts and developing their own ideas in writing.

     

    During the mathematics exam, students must demonstrate their ability to reason with quantities and their relationships to solve real-world problems. Many previous assessments focused mostly on rote procedures only. In elementary school, students develop procedural skills, conceptual understanding, and modeling and application skills with a particular focus on number sense, place value, fractions and properties of operations.

      

    3. What does the test look like?

     

    Some NJSLA test questions may look unfamiliar. While old tests were looking for the right answer, these tests are also looking for evidence that the student understands and can apply concepts. 

    The NJSLA test is broken into two sections and given at two different times, in order to measure various kinds of knowledge and skills.

     

    The early spring performance-based component includes longer questions that usually require multiple steps. It measures critical thinking, reasoning and the ability to apply skills and knowledge in reading, writing and mathematics. 

     

    Students participate in the end-of-year component shortly before the end of the school year. This consists of innovative, short-answer questions to measure concepts and skills.  They also show understanding of mathematics concepts, procedures and short applications.

     

    Visit parcconline.org to try one of the practice tests for yourself!

     

    4. What role does technology play? Why are the tests computer-based?

     

    In a globally competitive era, 21st century technology should be available for all students, not just an option for some. In fact, Flemington-Raritan Regional School District has worked conscientiously to increase student access to technology as a tool for enriching instruction.  

    In our District, students will take the NJSLA Computer-Based Assessment. Because there are far more accommodations built into the computer test, all students will have the opportunity to show what they know on their own.

     

    Technology tools, such as the highlighter, line reader and magnifier, promote student independence. The students are the drivers of their own testing experience which gives them confidence. Students can change the text size or have the computer read to them. Most of these tools are available to any student; however, some accommodations require prior documentation. Students have/will run through a technology tutorial and become confident in using the technologies prior to taking the assessments.

     

     

     

     
    Credits: PARCC Educator Leader Cadre members

     

     

Last Modified on July 31, 2020